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Tuesday Chew: Tim Wigmore - connecting people to design objects

Tim Wigmore

Last year DesignQuarterly named him one the Top Ten Australian and New Zealand Designers. His creative furniture design is known to push the boundaries between interior design, installation art, and exhibition design. We delve into the creative depths of Tim Wigmore’s mind and find out what makes him tick.

Who on earth are you?

I am the son of two engineer parents. I have a small design studio and workshop in central Wellington, which I share with fellow designer and fiancé Rebecca Asquith. 

I live in Wellington because I enjoy the vibe of the city and being able to walk or ride most places.

What do you do?

I design and produce lighting and furniture objects for commercial and residential applications.  The projects I do flow through from one-off sculptural works to medium scale production design. 

I sell work through various retail outlets but also work with a range of clients to realise unique design solutions for interiors, exhibition design and custom furniture.

When you were young, what did you want to grow up to be?

I wanted to be a vet.

What inspires your designs?

I believe that the brain is like a sponge. We take in a huge amount of information and somehow a massive amount of it stays in there somewhere.  We have this amazing ability to stretch, combine and extend this information and develop new concepts.  We find our own ways to express and share concepts rolled in with our beliefs and emotions and I believe that design is just another outlet for exploring ideas and processing the stuff that's inside. 

I'm inspired by my friends, by nature, by music. 

From left to right: Push around; Wave Vanity for Uku Ceramics; Through and through Breakfast Bar 

What’s been your most challenging project so far?

To date my most challenging project has been a cantilevered sliding rotating illuminated breakfast bar and display cabinet for a residence in Thorndon. Many of the elements of this project stretched me and I relished the opportunity to work with a number of different experts ranging from mechanist's, structural engineers, electrical engineers, and various fabricators.  The finished piece looks simple but provides an amazing experience for the user and the client absolutely loves it.

What are you currently working on?

Currently I am working on a new exhibition design for the New Dowse for an interactive kids show exploring textiles that will open shortly.  I'm designing a series of information stands for the Department of Conservation, and I'm starting to develop some ideas for a furniture exhibition next year including a new concept for a room divider. 

From left to right: Butsudan and Table;Giddyup Rocking Stool; Pil Lamp

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